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Living is believing

John 20:31

“but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name."  

        John states very plainly here the reason that he wrote his book of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. First of all, and obviously, he was aware that there would be many people who would live after he himself died and that those people would need to know the truth. However, the phrase that he chose to use at the end of this verse is what is important. It is so profound that it can be missed easily. John says that it is not the reading that gives life the name of Jesus, but it is the believing that does. He says, “that believing you may have life in His name.”

I recently watched one of my favorite movies- The Book of Eli, and the general premise of the movie is that Denzel Washington {Eli} hast get the Bible to a post- apocalyptic San Francisco. On his journey, there is a wicked ruler who knows the power the Bible has and, since it is the last one, wants to steal it from Eli so he can use it to control people. You see, that moved does an excellent job of demonstrating that just reading the Bible will not change a person, but it is the belief in what the Word says that will change a person. As the Word says, in Proverbs 23:7, “as a man thinks in his heart, so is he” , what a person believes will manifest in their lives. 

    Moreover, as this is especially true when speaking specifically of salvation, it is also true in the context everyday life and provision. All of the things written in just the gospel of John, for example do not focus solely on salvation as such. Rather, there are many stories that tell of salvation in microcosms of human life. Stories that tell of salvation through deliverance from sickness, disease, sinful bondage, and even death. All of life, no matter how acute the matter, can be more abundant for the believer when they actually believe that Jesus Christ has given them life in each issue they might face in their lives. I further present to you that simply reading the Word and failing to prove your belief therein by your actions is more dangerous than never reading the Word at all. For to whom much is given, much is required and if you remain ignorant of all of the wonderful things Jesus did and the promises that accompany life in Him, then you cannot be held responsible for them. If, however, you read and read, and read the Bible but never actually prove that you believe it by adjusting your actions, then you will be held responsible for that…. and it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God. 

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